When John Lennon chanced to read a newspaper account of the coroner’s proceedings, he immortalised Browne as “a lucky man who made the grade” in A Day In The Life, the closing track of the Beatles’ album Sergeant Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band (1967).She was born Noreen Anne Mac Sherry in the autumn of 1941 near Yeovil, Somerset.Her partner of 26 years, Robbie Oliver, died last year.

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But while Tara Browne’s money and aristocratic background earned him a raffish reputation , Nicky — always unmaterialistic — lavished as much attention on her two young sons as on the rock stars of the day whom she helped entertain at their mews house in Eaton Row, Belgravia.

“Musicians were interested in having a place to hang out where there were no fans bothering them,” she told the author Paul Howard, Tara Browne’s biographer.

Nicky blamed pressure from her mother-in-law for the eventual breakdown of her marriage; matters deteriorated still further when Oonagh Guinness began her custody battle for the children.

When Nicky lost the case a few weeks after Tara’s death, she moved to southern Spain, deciding it would be cheaper to settle there than to remain, comparatively impoverished, in London.

The eldest of three children, Noreen ran away to London as a teenager in search of a more exciting life.

After being sacked from her first job, at the Bank of England, when she got in a muddle over exchange rates, she worked as an artist’s assistant, making canvases and keeping the studio clean.

“We had a good sound system, so our flat became a place where they could come around and smoke dope. One place would finish and everyone would say: 'Where can we go now?

Tara’s.” Paul Mc Cartney told interviewers that he took LSD for the first time with Tara Browne, and Marianne Faithfull has asserted that Browne “was on acid” the night he died — though the coroner found no traces of drink or drugs in his bloodstream.

In the years that followed, she was further distraught that her young sons were shuttled from one school to another (some 20 in all, she recalled), and that she was allowed to see them only in the holidays.